Tuesday, February 07, 2006

More game cam

I'm still fascinated by the game cam pictures. I believe there are two pairs of coyotes who use this road as part of their territorial boundry.

This one has a mate, but he/she usually shies out of the picture after the first shot, which invariably only captures a portion of him/her.

Talk about your evil eyes!

The two above are another pair, I think. One is stockier and lighter in color, and their tails seem a different color than the animal in the first two shots.

Another night... a raccoon is curled into a ball, focused on the approaching coyote. I don't think the camera is triggering on smaller animals like raccoons. We just see this one because a coyote happened to pass by at the same time.

And stay away!

Barking? Chewing? Coughing? Choking? I can't tell.

One thing the camera does not handle too well is bright daylight. The pictures look grainy and strange. I tried fixing these, but had limited success. I decided to post them anyway since I thought the subject was so interesting.

Deer with a withered hindquarter.

Maybe you can see it a bit better in this one. The back leg seems to be just hanging there. I can't tell if she's able to use it minimally, or not at all.

On the Cuddeback Gallery there have been some pictures of a doe with only three legs. She seems to get along just fine, but I think that she, and this doe, demonstrate the current lack of predators. (The pictures rotate off the Gallery page so they may not be there still.)


Anonymous said...

I agree - these pics are absolutely fascinating, and your bobcat pic thrilled me.

Do you have wasting disease there, among deer? We don't have it here yet, I don't think, but it's a Creutzfeld-Jakob - madcow thing, I think - something to think about if you eat venison.

I've been plugging for a Cuddeback here - you've started a trend amongst the nature blogs!

Rurality said...

No, the wasting disease hasn't been found here (or anywhere else in the southeast as far as I know). They have an active testing program in AL. But yeah I've thought about it... nobody gives us venison much nowdays though. Hubby doesn't like it much anyway but I do.

robin andrea said...

So interesting to see that raccoon curled into a ball. Part of their routine I never get to see.

I also thought of the wasting disease when I saw that doe photo. Her survival does say something about the abundance of food and the lack of predators.

R.Powers said...

We DO NOT get tired of your game camera shots so just keep 'em coming. Maybe we'll get to see a coyote eating a raccoon.

I listened to a radio program on public radio the other day which put a different shine on the expanding range of the coyote. The biologist was making the point that our native canid, the Red Wolf has been exterminated in FL to the advantage of small mammals like coons and dillos. The result was an artificially high pop of coons etc to the detriment of nesting birds, etc.

The biologist's message was the coyote would be a positive influence on the environment. They get a lot of negative press so I found that view refreshing.

T. Beth said...

Wow, I wish that I had a game cam! Yours takes very good photos for an automated system. You obviously have set it up really well and have managed to capture some fascinating candid images of wildlife.

The MacBean Gene said...

Those pictures are fantastic.
We have coyotes in our area and they are not particularly loved. In a pack they've been known to attack humans. Our friend who has chickens really does not find them welcome.
The bob cat was neat. We saw one run across the road when we were comming from church the other night.

Lorianne said...

Many years ago, there was a doe at a park where I volunteered that had gotten hit by a car & sustained a compound fracture on one of her hind legs. She hobbled about on three legs with a bone nub visible on her inside thigh, and visitors were outraged that the park didn't "do anything" to help her.

Park rangers watched the doe on a daily basis to make sure she was still ambulatory & not in visible pain...and by season's end, skin had healed over the exposed bone nub & she was fully able to walk on three legs, coming to the park's nature center to feed on a daily basis & looking quite sleek & glossy.

The next spring, she bore twin fawns, so the fact that she had one gimpy, dragging leg didn't interfere with breeding or birthing. Had this doe lived in a habitat with natural or human hunters, she would have undoubtedly been preyed upon...but in a protected park habitat lacking large predators, she was able to function on three legs.

Rachel said...

Great pictures! I sure hope we don't get to see the raccoon being eaten as someone mentioned.

That poor deer!

Thank you for sharing these great pictures with us!! Looking forward to what else is captured on film!

Anonymous said...

what fun. it's always a good day whe you can see coyotes(my experience in 45 years of hiking AND hanging out around them i've never heard of them attacking humans unless they are habituated by food)AND an accidental racoon. you can delete this comment if you feel it could cause problems ;)

threecollie said...

Wonderful pictures. Please don't feel that anyone gets bored with them. All your photos are spectacular and much enjoyed.
I would love to try something like your game camera here. We leave our hedgerows and have lots of varied habitat, woods fields and brush land, thus there is much game and many birds. We see them often when we are out on the tractor as they have little fear of that.

Happy and Blue 2 said...

I really like the pictures..

Dave said...

Floridacracker is right. When top carnivores are extirpated, an explosion of mid-sized predators such as raccoons can wreak havoc with populations they prey upon, such as neotropical migrant birds. So while coyotes will indeed eat your chickens if you don't have dogs and/or fencing to protect them, they can actually help protect songbirds.

I have never heard of humans being attacked by wild coyotes. On the other hand, people die from attacks by domestic and feral dogs every year. Somehow this never seems to affect the status of the dog as "man's best friend."

Lacy said...

I too love the gamecam! Keep 'em coming. There's a book by Barbara Kingsolver that explores the increasing range of coyotes in the east. "Prodigal Summer" is the book, and it comes to some of the same conclusions, that they are good for the ecosystem since they are a comprable predator to the extinct Red Wolf.

Love your site!

Rurality said...

Thanks, I'm glad you are not getting too tired of the game cam pics.

I think the coyotes definitely keep the raccoons in check - we see much less of them here than we did in the suburbs. Unfortunately they also exclude or kill the foxes in the area. There's only been one fox spotted on our property since we've lived here. (I want to move the game cam to this area later on.)

I don't think I've heard of them attacking humans, but of course like anything else if they get overpopulated and/or overly habituated to people (or rabid) you never know. Someone forwarded an article to me about a bobcat attacking a lady recently! Strange behavior...

Anyway, although I'm sure these are the coyotes who are chicken-eaters, it's hard not to admire how handsome they are.

Oh yeah, how can someone have been hiking for 45 years when they're only 25 years old?! ;)

Karen Schmautz said...

These are wonderful photos. We've been having a lot of trouble with coyotes lately. I have to take the dog outside with me at night because the coyotes hang around and growl at us. Pretty creepy.

Anonymous said...

karen, you are for sure my new BEST friend!! actually i will be 52 in august.

Anonymous said...

I'll never get tired of these photos. And they strengthen my resolve to have a set-up like yours myself one day. We have more coyotes around this year than I've ever known before--tracks suggest that there is a pack of four travelling through together. It would be great to be able to confirm that with a photo or two. So far as I can tell our resident foxes are still around, so far resisting being chased out or killed by the coyotes.